Soot Melts Snow Experiment Redux

December 5, 2010, I posted my experiment to demonstrate that soot melts snow much more quickly than if the snow is clean.  The “soot” came from old fireplace ashes. This is a realistic “real world” substance since much of the soot that reaches the Arctic comes from wood burning.

However, the climate models assume soot is carbon black. So, I was asked to repeat the experiment with lamp black. I did it earlier today.

Here is the virgin snow at 9am. Snow depth, 4 inches.

I spread the lamp black and measured four hours later.

In the clean snow, the amount is just under 4 inches, less than 1/4″ of melting occurred. Note the drop off to the left where the carbon was spread.

Snow depth 2 inches.  There was an area of lighter carbon with the amount 3″ (not shown).

The results of the experiment are the same — the snow melts much more quickly in areas where the snow cover has been darkened than in areas that remain pristine.

The point is this: It is pollution from China (as indicated by four peer-reviewed papers) that has caused the rapid Arctic ice melt, not temperatures which have been colder than normal the last three melt seasons.

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